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  • Nutation's Avatar
    Wednesday, 20th February, 2019, 07:41 PM
    Some things will always be scarce - prime real estate, original art, honorific titles. Even now, I can get free water, paper, flu shots, and various other goods that have a marginal cost to the provider of nearly zero. But, money is now and probably will be the most efficient way to distribute scarcities, assuming that individual differences in preference are to be respected. On a small scale,...
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  • Nutation's Avatar
    Monday, 4th February, 2019, 06:06 PM
    I agree with this. For quickly bringing in another Xelayan, they should have had an immediate reason; otherwise, there would be (and seemingly was) time to craft another character and perhaps show us another race in the Union.
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  • Nutation's Avatar
    Sunday, 27th January, 2019, 06:29 PM
    If it's 3 fights per day, I think players will adjust. 6 per day is tougher (and was the designers' target). Characters want to do something every round, which was the motivation for creating cantrips. Clerics and druids have other things to do (weapons, Wild Shape), which leaves the wizards and sorcs. I envision them choosing spells like Flaming Sphere that persist, but that will cut down on...
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  • Nutation's Avatar
    Sunday, 27th January, 2019, 06:08 PM
    I wouldn't try it before the various technologies have stabilized (stopped improving). Otherwise, ship #2 passes ship #1 and arrives first. Actually, that's also a way to send new supplies and parts, so maybe it's not a show-stopper.
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  • Nutation's Avatar
    Sunday, 27th January, 2019, 05:57 PM
    I wasn't asking "why" to insinuate you're doing a bad thing. It's because we weigh the various aspects of the game differently. I can't read your mind, so I don't know what you consider balanced. As a constructive question, how many fights do you expect your players to handle in a day? (I don't think short rests are important to this question, but fights are.) The half-casters get a big...
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  • Nutation's Avatar
    Sunday, 27th January, 2019, 05:34 PM
    Well, the first question is "Why?". What problem are you trying to fix? Full casters only get one spell of levels 6-9 (disregarding refilling slots). This gives them an extra Heroes' Feast, for example, which has a rather bigger effect than casting a cantrip every round.
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  • Nutation's Avatar
    Friday, 25th January, 2019, 07:19 AM
    I never bought the claim in the Star Trek universe that the Federation had evolved beyond money, and I don't buy it here. (Have we heard of this before on The Orville?) Replicator technology makes most resource shortages disappear, but it's still damned efficient to have a means of tracking the exchange of value. I generally like the idea of this plot; I agree that it is little-tilled...
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The Orville Season Two - Thoughts? Wednesday, 20th February, 2019 07:41 PM

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Wednesday, 20th February, 2019

  • 08:03 PM - Jester David quoted Nutation in post The Orville Season Two - Thoughts?
    That doesn't mean anything, since we don't actually know what warping space entails. Maybe the outright power output needed to warp space is small, and the trick is what you do with that power. In Trek we know, since they had entire books devoted to the in-world science. I can pull out my Next Generation Technical Manual and tell you the exact power output of the Enterprise-D's Warp Reactor. Orville… less so. But the show seems much more interested in the characters than delving that deep into the pseudo-physics rabbit hole. But it stands to reason "infinite power" is likely a key element of building to a post-scarcity economy. How many of the "crap jobs" are in doing things to manually produce the stuff that is now free? You have machines to do heavy labor. Computers to do boring record keeping. Why would you keep going to some crap job when there is no need for humans (or any sentient being) to do crap jobs? There are entire industries that largely exist because the govern...

Tuesday, 19th February, 2019


Saturday, 16th February, 2019

  • 03:09 AM - Jester David quoted Nutation in post The Orville Season Two - Thoughts?
    I never bought the claim in the Star Trek universe that the Federation had evolved beyond money, and I don't buy it here. (Have we heard of this before on The Orville?) Replicator technology makes most resource shortages disappear, but it's still damned efficient to have a means of tracking the exchange of value. I’ve thought about this at length, and while writing for a Trek RPG blog. It’s actually kinda simple and comes down to warp engines and transporters. Warp reactors generate enough power to warp space. Which also means a reactor the size of a small strip mall can power the Eastern United States. There’s a riddiculous amount of power available. And when every city can have one you have an effective limitless amount of power. Supply and demand kicks in, and when you have an infinite amount of power it becomes free. With unlimited and free power you can do all kinds of projects that would otherwise be cost ineffective. Like mile long greenhouses in the Sahara and mass desalination p...

Wednesday, 13th February, 2019


Saturday, 9th February, 2019


Monday, 4th February, 2019

  • 08:12 PM - Ryujin quoted Nutation in post The Orville Season Two - Thoughts?
    I agree with this. For quickly bringing in another Xelayan, they should have had an immediate reason; otherwise, there would be (and seemingly was) time to craft another character and perhaps show us another race in the Union. Reason: To avoid rewrites? Story reason thrown out the window.

Monday, 28th January, 2019

  • 12:11 AM - Tonguez quoted Nutation in post Generation Ships--- Can we build one now?
    I wouldn't try it before the various technologies have stabilized (stopped improving). Otherwise, ship #2 passes ship #1 and arrives first. Actually, that's also a way to send new supplies and parts, so maybe it's not a show-stopper. That would be an interesting premise for a short story - the first great generation ship is launched and 1000 years later arrives on a new planet only to discover that they are late, later colonist arrived 300 years prior and their entire culture of believing they were humanities last hope is now obsolete
  • 12:01 AM - MarkB quoted Nutation in post Generation Ships--- Can we build one now?
    I wouldn't try it before the various technologies have stabilized (stopped improving). Otherwise, ship #2 passes ship #1 and arrives first. Actually, that's also a way to send new supplies and parts, so maybe it's not a show-stopper. Generation ships aren't a great option unless you're desperate, for a lot of the reasons mentioned in this thread. Ideally, you want to wait until you've perfected something along the lines of cryogenics/stasis/time-dilation, so that you don't need to deal with the logistics of keeping humans alive and conscious for hundreds of years in space.

Sunday, 27th January, 2019

  • 07:11 PM - FrogReaver quoted Nutation in post Cantrip House Rule
    If it's 3 fights per day, I think players will adjust. 6 per day is tougher (and was the designers' target). Characters want to do something every round, which was the motivation for creating cantrips. Clerics and druids have other things to do (weapons, Wild Shape), which leaves the wizards and sorcs. I envision them choosing spells like Flaming Sphere that persist, but that will cut down on buff spells that require concentration. Or cast Magic Weapon. Actually, magic damage will be in shorter supply. Monster resistance to normal weapons becomes more significant, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. (I play in AL which changed the rules last year so every character is pretty much guaranteed a +1 weapon by 7th.) There is also such things as wands. The mix of magic items you give out will matter, but when does it not? Decide if you want that to be a tool to compensate or not. Going back to the player choices, they might just avoid building characters that run out of things to do, e.g., more ...
  • 06:23 PM - GMforPowergamers quoted Nutation in post Cantrip House Rule
    I think I would not boost the character's highest level slot, but stop at the next-highest. Maybe one step lower for the half-casters, maybe not. You get more utility spell castings that way, which could be interesting. Alternatively, you get more spell attacks of low level, which might feel similar to the previous cantrip approach. Rangers and Paladins don't have cantrips...but eldritch knights and spell thieves do.
  • 06:04 PM - FrogReaver quoted Nutation in post Cantrip House Rule
    As a constructive question, how many fights do you expect your players to handle in a day? (I don't think short rests are important to this question, but fights are.) Fights per day: Anywhere from 1 to 8. My current campaign does 1-3 typically. Others swear by the 6-8 mantra. I'd be interested in hearing in the proposed change has issues in any of those circumstances. The half-casters get a big boost. Rangers and paladins probably weren't relying much on cantrips. You get more smites, and that's probably not needed. You exclude warlocks, and that makes sense. I think I would not boost the character's highest level slot, but stop at the next-highest. Maybe one step lower for the half-casters, maybe not. You get more utility spell castings that way, which could be interesting. Alternatively, you get more spell attacks of low level, which might feel similar to the previous cantrip approach. Half-Casters are something I haven't considered. I'll have to think some on whether they really ne...
  • 05:48 PM - FrogReaver quoted Nutation in post Cantrip House Rule
    Full casters only get one spell of levels 6-9 (disregarding refilling slots). This gives them an extra Foresight, for example, which has a rather bigger effect than casting a cantrip every round. Actually full casters get a 2nd level 6 slot at level 19 and a 2nd level 7 slot at level 20. More importantly though, I the house rule I proposed stopped giving extra spells at level 6 spells. So you wouldn't get an extra 9th level spell like you mention here.
  • 05:38 PM - FreezerBurnedDM quoted Nutation in post Cantrip House Rule
    Well, the first question is "Why?". What problem are you trying to fix? I can't agree more. Cantrip scaling exists for a reason, I think you're trying to solve a problem that doesn't exist. The one exception is that I think scaling eldritch blast alone to warlock levels isn't bad. It nerfs one level warlock dips slightly.

Saturday, 26th January, 2019

  • 04:22 PM - Morrus quoted Nutation in post The Orville Season Two - Thoughts?
    Replicator technology makes most resource shortages disappear, but it's still damned efficient to have a means of tracking the exchange of value. I think the point is that physical commodities have zero value because of zero rarity.
  • 05:03 AM - Dannyalcatraz quoted Nutation in post The Orville Season Two - Thoughts?
    I never bought the claim in the Star Trek universe that the Federation had evolved beyond money, and I don't buy it here. (Have we heard of this before on The Orville?) Replicator technology makes most resource shortages disappear, but it's still damned efficient to have a means of tracking the exchange of value. Utopian/post-scarcity economics is only now being discussed seriously, in part because of the impacts of technology on the job market. Right now, the discussion don’t have much in the way of solutions since they’re just now describing the problems and recording the effects. The first real warning sign I can think of was a circa 2012 (I think) prototype modular robot that could be programmed to do @200 manufacturing jobs for the price of 5 years’ labor of an Indonesian factory worker. Fast forward to today, we have driverless automobiles threatening any job involving driving for a wage, cashierless retail stores, specialized software that can generate basic legal documents for...
  • 03:37 AM - Maxperson quoted Nutation in post The Orville Season Two - Thoughts?
    I never bought the claim in the Star Trek universe that the Federation had evolved beyond money, and I don't buy it here. (Have we heard of this before on The Orville?) Replicator technology makes most resource shortages disappear, but it's still damned efficient to have a means of tracking the exchange of value. Yeah. I remember it being said in at least one other episode. Last season I think.

Friday, 25th January, 2019

  • 06:44 PM - Ryujin quoted Nutation in post The Orville Season Two - Thoughts?
    I never bought the claim in the Star Trek universe that the Federation had evolved beyond money, and I don't buy it here. (Have we heard of this before on The Orville?) Replicator technology makes most resource shortages disappear, but it's still damned efficient to have a means of tracking the exchange of value. I generally like the idea of this plot; I agree that it is little-tilled soil. The Union has presumably done several first contacts, so "the book" should advise each captain to talk to a society on its own terms. Mercer would never do such a thing, of course, otherwise 10% of the audience and 50% of the writers wouldn't understand. And so we get 30 days of stonewalling. The eventual solution was plausible enough. I presume that the lightsail we saw was really placed farther out in the star system so that its position was essentially the same from everywhere on the planet. I also presume that Isaac hacked the astrometric satellites so that they produced consistent info. I also ...

Friday, 18th January, 2019

  • 10:47 PM - Ryujin quoted Nutation in post The Orville Season Two - Thoughts?
    They fooled me - I did not recognize the returning actress (understandably). The final gesture (letting Teleya go) was predictable, but how they got to that point was very good. Gordon was quite in character. Humor should emerge from the natural behavior of the characters, and this is an instance. OTOH, I will not be sorry to see Warburtun's character leave. He was an example of forcing humor to happen. The story started to be predictable once the Krill ship showed up. It's a well-traveled path, but I agree that they did it well. I agree on Warburton's character. A bit of waste of someone like him too.

Tuesday, 8th January, 2019

  • 09:53 PM - BookBarbarian quoted Nutation in post AL Thor in Dwarf form. Help please!
    BookBarbarian is right about cantrips being generally better than the Dwarven Thrower, but flavor is also a thing. Indeed, and if you are using Booming Blade a Dwarven Thrower works just as well as any +3 versatile weapon.
  • 07:52 PM - bkcrosson quoted Nutation in post AL Thor in Dwarf form. Help please!
    Druids and beastmaster rangers can also fly, either by wildshape or on the back of a beast. I assume you actually plan to play the character up to that level in AL. That will take a while (or do lots of judging for the XP rewards). [I know they don't call it "XP" anymore.] As you level, you earn Treasure Points and spend those TP on available magic items. I haven't checked your budget to see if the listed items are affordable. Whether they get unlocked to be purchased is unknowable. As to the build, it's a good concept that I haven't seen. I think you've dipped too far into feats and skipped too many characteristic bumps. At a minimum, I would drop Elemental Adept. Nutation can you help me to understand that? Everything I am reading says that is the apex of the build at late levels because everything has resistance. Personally I'd rather bump charisma +2.


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